I tried so hard to do what I thought was wanted of me by my parents
I aborted my pregnancies conceived out of wedlock
I got engaged and married- thought I was following the script to be accepted and approved by my family
Yet my marriage somehow sparked a crises, as if it were an unforgivable crime
In their eyes it wasn’t with the right man or at the right time
I tried so hard, gave the ultimate sacrifice
Yet I still haven’t come close to getting it right, in their eyes
I give up on trying to make them happy
I no longer take the bait of their meltdowns, no longer jump to their rescue
I live for my own happiness now
How much more obtainable a goal
How effortless compared to the burden I’ve been hauling
I practically float away from the wreck of our relationship
In the shower I see
One leg shaved smooth, the other hairy
I finally appear as non-binary on the outside as I feel on the inside
Though I doubt that I will ever feel safe enough to tell anyone outloud
At least in the shower, I stand proud
This is all of me
Another day, another death by COVID.
My COVID patient who died today was relatively healthy and young.
While filling out his death certificate, I paused over the ’cause of death’ section:
My patient had multi-organ failure with a subsequent cardiac arrhythmia incompatible with life and viral pneumonia causing respiratory failure, however the failure that lead up to his COVID infection was systemic at a societal level.
My patient was a prisoner, infected by COVID-19 because he was denied the ability to socially distance, robbed of the right the protect himself.
I didn’t know him, but as I studied his body during his final hours I imagined what his life had been like, and wanted to include on his death certificate:
Cause of death:
Complications resulting from loss of human rights due to imprisonment
Secondary to the prison-industrial complex
Secondary to class warfare
Secondary to poverty
Secondary to racism
I didn’t know him, but I shared pieces of his struggle:
Adverse childhood experiences, trauma on trauma on trauma
His premature death is another stone in my pocket
My path is liberation
Wherever his soul is now, I hope he feels liberated too
Liberated from the brown skin which lead to his incarceration which inevitably did him in.